Are There Any Drug Interactions I Should Be Aware Of
The following medications should be used with caution when given with sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim: amantadine, antacids, cyclosporine, digoxin, thiazide diuretics, oral hypoglycemic agents, methotrexate, phenytoin, tricyclic antidepressants, warfarin, potassium supplements, potassium-sparing drugs, and pyrimethamine.
Be sure to tell your veterinarian about any medications that your pet is taking.
About Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections are common infections that can affect the bladder, the kidneys and the tubes connected to them.
Anyone can get them, but they’re particularly common in women. Some women experience them regularly .
UTIs can be painful and uncomfortable, but usually pass within a few days and can be easily treated with antibiotics.
This page is about UTIs in adults. There is a separate article about UTIs in children.
This page covers:
A Pharmacist Can Help With Utis
You can ask a pharmacist about treatments for a UTI. A pharmacist can:
- offer advice on things that can help you get better
- suggest the best painkiller to take
- tell you if you need to see a GP about your symptoms
Some pharmacies offer a UTI management service and can prescribe antibiotics if they’re needed.
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Other Ways To Help Manage A Uti:
- Drinking plenty of water may help to dilute your urine and help flush out bacteria that causes UTIs.
- Avoid coffee, alcohol and soft drinks that contain citrus juices and caffeine. They can irritate your bladder and aggravate your need to urinate. No thanks.
- Place a heating pad over your abdomen to help ease pressure and discomfort.
- Once your UTI is treated, maintain a healthy urinary tract with AZO Cranberry®, in the form of your choice: caplets, softgels or gummies.*
When Should I Call My Healthcare Provider
- Back pain.
If you have any of these symptoms, or your other symptoms continue after treatment, call your healthcare provider. A UTI can spread throughout your urinary tract and into other parts of your body. However, treatment is very effective and can quickly relieve your symptoms.
The Best Treatment Options For Utis
Treatment options for urinary tract infections always include antibiotics. You cannot treat a UTI without eliminating the bacteria thats present in your urinary tract. While there are hundreds of natural remedies online, you should not rely on these as primary treatment options. Without antibiotics, UTIs can spread to your bladder and kidney and cause long-term damages.
Which Antibiotic Gets Rid Of A Uti Fastest
The antibiotic you will be prescribed will depend on a few factors, such as how often you get UTIs, your medication allergies, and other medical conditions you have. No matter which one your provider chooses, though, know that they all work well.
is a first choice because it works very well and can treat a UTI in as little as 3 days when taken twice a day. Some providers might choose to have you take it a few days longer than that to be sure your infection is totally gone. Unfortunately, Bactrim is a sulfa drug, and many people are allergic to it.
is another first choice for UTIs, but it has to be taken a bit longer than Bactrim. You have to take Macrobid twice a day for a minimum of 5 days for UTIs, but many providers will have you take it for a week to be sure you are all better.
remains a fan favorite because it works in as little as 3 days and only has to be taken once a day. But it does carry some serious risks like tendon ruptures and heart problems. It also tends to cause bacterial resistance more often than the previously mentioned antibiotics.
Best Remedies For Bladder Infections
About bladder infections
The urethra is the tube that takes urine out of the body. Once bacteria go into the urethra, they can attach to the walls of the bladder and multiply quickly.
The resulting infection can cause uncomfortable symptoms, such as the sudden urge to urinate. It may also cause pain while urinating and abdominal cramping.
A combination of medical and home treatments may ease these symptoms. If left untreated, bladder infections can become life-threatening. This is because the infection can spread to the kidneys or blood.
Here are seven effective bladder infection remedies.
Key Points About Urinary Tract Infections
- Urinary tract infections are a common health problem that affects millions of people each year. These infections can affect any part of the urinary tract.
- Most UTIs are caused by E. coli bacteria, which normally live in the colon.
- The most common symptoms of UTIs include changes in urination such as frequency, pain, or burning urine looks dark, cloudy, or red and smells bad back or side pain nausea/vomiting and fever.
- Antibiotics are used to treat UTIs. Other treatments may include pain relievers, and drinking plenty of water to help wash bacteria out of the urinary tract.
- Other things that can be done may help reduce the likelihood of developing UTIs.
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How To Feel Better
If your healthcare professional prescribes you antibiotics:
- Take antibiotics exactly as your healthcare professional tells you.
- Do not share your antibiotics with others.
- Do not save antibiotics for later. Talk to your healthcare professional about safely discarding leftover antibiotics.
Drink plenty of water or other fluids. Your healthcare professional might also recommend medicine to help lessen the pain or discomfort. Talk with your healthcare professional if you have any questions about your antibiotics.
Living With Urinary Tract Infections
If you have 3 or more urinary tract infections each year, your doctor may want you to begin a preventive antibiotic program. A small dose of an antibiotic taken every day helps to reduce the number of infections. If sexual intercourse seems to cause infections for you, your doctor many suggest taking the antibiotic after intercourse.
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Can I Become Immune To The Antibiotics Used To Treat A Uti
Your body can actually get used to the antibiotics typically used to treat a urinary tract infection . This happens in people who have very frequent infections. With each UTI and use of antibiotics to treat it, the infection adapts and becomes harder to fight. This is called an antibiotic-resistant infection. Because of this, your healthcare provider may suggest alternative treatments if you have frequent UTIs. These could include:
- Waiting: Your provider may suggest that you watch your symptoms and wait. During this time, you may be encouraged to drink plenty of fluids in an effort to flush out your system.
- Intravenous treatment: In some very complicated cases, where the UTI is resistant to antibiotics or the infection has moved to your kidneys, you may need to be treated in the hospital. The medicine will be given to you directly in your vein . Once youre home, you will be prescribed antibiotics for a period of time to fully get rid of the infection.
See A Healthcare Provider
While UTIs arent usually a cause for major concern, if you dont get them treated, they can lead to more serious problems like a kidney infection. If you have a UTI, make an appointment with a healthcare provider as soon as possible. The fastest way to feel better is by taking an antibiotic to kill the bacteria causing your infection.
If going to see a provider in-person is not an option , there are plenty of telehealth services available that will allow you to set up a virtual appointment. Check out GoodRx Care for treatment of UTIs as well as many other medical conditions.
During your appointment, your provider will ask you questions about what symptoms you are experiencing and if you are prone to UTIs. You might be asked to provide a urine sample either in the office you are seen in or at a lab close to you. Lastly, your provider will prescribe you a course of antibiotics to get started on right away.
Some common antibiotics used for treating UTIs include nitrofurantoin , sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim , and ciprofloxacin . Typically, you only need to take them for 3 to 5 days, and most people start to feel relief within the first 2 to 3 days. Antibiotics can cause nausea, stomach upset, and diarrhea for many people. But, taking your dose with food can help lessen nausea and stomach upset, and taking a probiotic supplement like L. acidophilus can help with the diarrhea.
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If Cystitis Keeps Coming Back
If you keep getting cystitis , a doctor may prescribe stand-by antibiotics or continuous antibiotics.
A stand-by antibiotic is a prescription you can take to a pharmacy the next time you have symptoms of cystitis without needing to visit a GP first.
Continuous antibiotics are taken for several months to prevent further episodes of cystitis.
These may be prescribed:
- if cystitis usually occurs after having sex
- if cystitis isnt related to having sex
Your doctor may also recommend some measures you can take to prevent cystitis, although its not clear how effective these are.
Page last reviewed: 09 August 2018 Next review due: 09 August 2021
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Antibiotic Warnings And Treatment Concerns
The most commonly prescribed antibiotics for uncomplicated UTIs are similar in efficacy. But its important to note that ampicillin, amoxicillin, and sulfonamides are no longer the drugs of choice for combatting UTIs because of the emergence of antibiotic resistance. In addition, amoxicillin and clavulanate has been shown in previous research to be significantly less effective than others when it comes to treating urinary tract infections.
Also, as noted above, the FDA advises against using fluoroquinolones for uncomplicated UTIs. These medicines should only be considered if no other treatment options are available. In some cases, such as a complicated UTI or kidney infection, a healthcare provider may decide that a fluoroquinolone medicine is the best option, notes the American Academy of Family Physicians.
For pregnant women, some common antibiotics, such as fluoroquinolones and tetracyclines, should not be prescribed because of possible toxic effects on the fetus. But oral nitrofurantoin and cephalexin are considered good antibiotic choices for pregnant women with asymptomatic bacteriuria and acute cystitis, according to past research.
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How Is A Uti Normally Treated
A UTI is normally treated with antibiotics. Antibiotics get rid of the bacteria that are causing the infection. Most people with a UTI feel better after just 1 to 2 days of taking antibiotics. And these medications usually help symptoms go away more quickly than over-the-counter medications like Advil or Aleve.
But antibiotics can also have some downsides. They can cause side effects like nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and rash. Some people can even have an allergic reaction or other life-threatening complication. Overusing antibiotics may also have serious public health consequences.
With this in mind, many people choose to wait a couple days to see if their UTI gets better without antibiotics especially since many UTIs go away on their own. If your symptoms dont start to improve after 2 to 3 days, you can always think about starting an antibiotic. This could be an especially good plan for people who are at risk for antibiotic-related complications, like older adults.
Of course, there are situations where you shouldnt hold off on antibiotics. It can be dangerous to postpone treatment if you have a severe infection or are in a high-risk group. If youre unsure whether to wait or to start antibiotics right away, talk to a provider about which plan is right for you.
How Are Urinary Tract Infections Treated
You will need to treat a urinary tract infection. Antibiotics are medicines that kill bacteria and fight an infection. Antibiotics are typically used to treat urinary tract infections. Your healthcare provider will pick a drug that best treats the particular bacteria thats causing your infection. Some commonly used antibiotics can include:
- Quinolones .
Its very important that you follow your healthcare providers directions for taking the medicine. Dont stop taking the antibiotic because your symptoms go away and you start feeling better. If the infection is not treated completely with the full course of antibiotics, it can return.
If you have a history of frequent urinary tract infections, you may be given a prescription for antibiotics that you would take at the first onset of symptoms. Other patients may be given antibiotics to take every day, every other day, or after sexual intercourse to prevent the infection. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best treatment option for you if you have a history of frequent UTIs.
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How Do I Know If The Treatment Isnt Working
If the treatment isnt working, your symptoms will stay the same, get worse, or you will develop new symptoms. Call your doctor if you have a fever , chills, lower stomach pain, nausea, and vomiting. You should also call your doctor if, after taking medicine for 3 days, you still have a burning feeling when you urinate. If you are pregnant, you should also call your doctor if you have any contractions.
What Can I Take To Relieve Pain
Phenazopyridine hydrochloride may relieve your pain, burning, itching, and urgency to urinate within 20 minutes. Avoid taking it if you have kidney disease or are allergic to dyes. Do not worry if your urine turns reddish-orange when you take this medication. This common effect is not harmful, but it can stain clothing.
Methenamine and sodium salicylate work together to slow bacterial growth along the urinary tract and to control the UTI. Do not take this medication if you are allergic to aspirin, are on a low-sodium diet or anticoagulant therapy, or have stomach problems.
You can also take other pain relievers, such as NSAIDs or acetaminophen .
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Get Your Prescription Filled Right Away
Once you are done with your appointment and have received a prescription for an antibiotic, its important you get it filled at a pharmacy as soon as possible. The faster you start taking your medication, the faster your UTI will be gone.
If you usually use next-day prescription delivery or a mail order pharmacy, this is one time when you should avoid doing this. These options can cause a delay by anywhere from 1 day to 1 week . Youre better off using a local pharmacy in this case.
If going into the pharmacy is a concern due to COVID-19, many pharmacies have added options to help minimize the amount of time you are inside the building. Some options to ask about at your pharmacy include:
Same-day delivery through services like Instacart
Using the pharmacys drive-thru pick-up window
Paying ahead of time through the pharmacys smartphone app to make your time spent at the checkout counter faster
Every pharmacy is different, so make sure to ask your personal pharmacy if these options are available at your location.
How To Prevent Uti’s In Cats
The best way to prevent urinary tract infections from occurring in a cat is to ensure the urinary tract opening is kept clean at all times. Regular litter box cleaning and the washing of cat beds will aid in this task. Overweight cats may have trouble cleaning themselves and may need help keeping their urinary tract openings clean with a wet cloth or wipe. Adequate water intake will also help flush the bladder out regularly.
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Diagnosing Uti’s In Cats
If a cat owner is observing symptoms of a urinary tract infection in their cat they should schedule a visit with their cat’s veterinarian. A urine sample will need to be collected either by the owner at home with the use of special, non-absorbent litter or by the veterinarian. The veterinarian may temporarily keep the cat in the animal hospital until it urinates on its own in some non-absorbable litter or the urine may be obtained by cystocentesis. Cystocentesis is a quick and non-invasive technique to obtain a urine sample through the use of a needle and syringe. Some veterinarians prefer obtaining urine by cystocentesis while others prefer to allow a cat to provide a sample naturally.
Once urine is obtained a urinalysis will be performed. This type of test checks the urine for bacteria, crystals, blood, parasites, abnormal pH levels, abnormal specific gravity levels, glucose, and other things to aid the veterinarian in making a diagnosis. If bacteria is present in the urinalysis a urinary tract infection is diagnosed. Sometimes a urine culture must also be performed to see exactly what type of bacteria is in the infection in order to choose a specific antibiotic.
Recommendations For Uti Prevention
To prevent urinary tract infection, some research suggests that the following may be helpful:
- Increasing fluid intake: The doctor may recommend increased fluid intake to help flush bacteria out of the urinary system.
- Drinking cranberry juice: Drinking 8 ounces of cranberry juice a day may help prevent recurrent UTIs. People who take blood thinners such as warfarin or are prone to kidney stones should check with a physician before trying this approach.
- Proper hygiene: Regular bathing keeps the genital area bacteria free, and women should wipe front-to-back after using the bathroom so as to avoid introducing bacteria into the urethra.
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